Tax Breaks Abound & Revenue Decreases Causing Questions Over Whether Federal Education Funding Can Be Dropped

While Conservatives Have Spent Years Considering The Idea Of Removing The U.S Department Of Education’s Regulations On Tennessee Schools, Now That Those Considerations Are Being Backed With Research And Action, Tax Revenue Is Suddenly Down. 

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The Tennessee Conservative [By Rebecca Scott] –

Many conservatives question the value and benefit of the modern U.S. Department of Education.

As more emphasis is placed on social issues and equity, and less emphasis is placed on accuracy and excellency in education, Speaker of the Tennessee House of Representatives Cameron Sexton (R-Crossville-District 25), called for a thorough examination of the use of federal educational dollars, and whether or not the state of Tennessee could feasibly fund its own education system without the use of federal monies.

According to Speaker Sexton, “Any time the federal government sends money, there are always strings attached to those dollars, and there is always a possibility that it opens the state up to other regulations or restrictions.”

Senator Bo Watson (R-Hixson-District 11), chair of the Tennessee Senate Finance , Ways and Means Committee, cautions that, while it is worthwhile to examine the pros and cons of denying federal education funding, those federal monies come from the taxpayers of Tennessee.

Watson maintains that it is imperative that decisions are made based on solid numbers and research before allowing those tax dollars to be funneled into other federal government programs or to other states.

While many conservatives see the value in eliminating federal regulations in Tennessee schools, some Democrats balk at the idea of declining federal money, believing that it would only hurt the students of Tennessee.


While a group of both House and Senate members have been chosen to study the use of federal funding in education and the regulations attached to said funding, Tennessee is rather suddenly seeing a drop in state tax revenue.

In the 2022/2023 fiscal year, taxes and fees exceeded expectations by 2.3 billion dollars. But now, in the first half of the 2023/2024 fiscal year, numbers are not looking nearly as optimistic as lawmakers are made aware of shortfalls and needs for budget cuts or program reductions.

As Tennessee residents have enjoyed various sales tax holidays, particularly on groceries, sports gambling has simultaneously seen a significant decrease in tax rate while betting numbers continue to rise. Large corporations have received state money and benefited from tax exemptions and incentives. It’s no wonder that tax revenue is down.

In light of the current numbers, lawmakers are now questioning the state’s ability to sustain its own educational system without the assistance of federal funding.

While conservatives have spent years considering the idea of removing the U.S Department of Education’s regulations on Tennessee schools, now that those considerations are being backed with research and action, tax revenue is suddenly down.

In previous years, excess revenue would have provided necessary additional funding to replace what is received from the federal government.

Some Tennesseans question the timing and whether the drop in revenue is completely self-inflicted.


The findings of the current research remains to be seen, but there may be a financial uphill battle if it is determined that Tennessee education would be better off free from the input of the federal government. 

About the Author: Rebecca Scott is a Tennessee resident and reporter for The Tennessee Conservative. You can reach Rebecca at

5 thoughts on “Tax Breaks Abound & Revenue Decreases Causing Questions Over Whether Federal Education Funding Can Be Dropped

  • October 27, 2023 at 4:24 pm

    Just more excuses to stay on the Federal tit. Stopping funding professional sports, quit handing out tax breaks like there’s no tomorrow and, surprisingly, you’ll find we can do without the strings the Feds bring to the State.

    • October 29, 2023 at 8:17 am

      If those Nashville Cronies & Billee, and all those other budget suckers had any real Gumption and half a brain, they’d come to understand the explosion of businesses and new incoming residents would trip over each other to move to Tn as soon as the feds are out of the classroom.

  • October 27, 2023 at 5:20 pm

    How about the Legislature drop all of the crony corporate welfare? Half a billion to a Titans stadium? Or how about the Ford electric debacle given that electric vehicles are a losing proposition. Every week I hear about how generous Gov Bill Lee is in giving away tax dollars to some company.

    We the taxpayers would all be better served if our government schools could actually educate their students vs indoctrinate them.

  • October 27, 2023 at 8:54 pm

    The usual backstabbing TN Rhinos making excuses to stay on the federal tit and promote anti-american, pro pedophile agenda in schools.

  • October 30, 2023 at 12:14 pm

    Help separate “the wheat from the chaff.” Families with great work ethic are already flocking to Ty Tennessee for our conservative values. Eliminating the federal edicts that are tied to their dollars, will accelerate that migration.


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